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the looney highwayman

For 46 years I have crossed this highwayman’s turf on the way home with my paycheck. He and his gang of thieves have taken 1/5th of my earnings every time. The lowest member of the gang has always had more money, more leisure and a higher-cost lifestyle than I have ever enjoyed. Of course none of them were ever smart enough to have even half the fun I did, but nevertheless, living high on my money they sure as heck could have.

It has been frustrating to watch this gang and the horrible things they do, but I have been resigned to losing that which they choose to take into a bottomless pit of perversion. Fighting them, avoiding them, producing nothing they value are options I have considered, but I continue to dumbly trod the same path home every payday to be held up between my earnings calculation and my bank deposit.

One day an older friend (by 6 months) tells me that the highwayman is giving him a bit of the booty every month. He-he, your money is coming to me. Inspired, I ask the gang and find they will give me $200 less than my 40-hour a week job does if I prefer to do nothing… or, at least, earn nothing. Their offer actually allows me to earn just a few hundred dollars shy of what I used to and still get to keep my cut of their takings.

I had a little discussion with my feet, knee, back and wrist who voted unanimously to have the highwayman fund a change from the miles, toting, lifting and weekend work that is a thrift store job. It turns out that, in the perverse world of the highwayman, full-time work at minimum wage is JUST enough to disqualify you for a check from them. They understand dependence. They prefer it. They incentivise it.

Of course they are assuming I’ll begin sitting in my easy chair eating bon-bons and watching Oprah. They figure it will take no time at all for me to expect and require their handout, be it the subsistence paycheck to my own bank or a bowl of gruel in the FEMA soup-line.

I figure they have just given me the time and energy to re-enter the world of self-employment that served me well for almost half of my working career. I’m hoping that the real gift will have me established earning an honest living when the lights go out in the world of fiat currencies.